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Dave update

Posts: 120
Joined: Jun 2012

I have not posted here lately, and I apologize. I just wanted to let those of you not on the FB page or Esophageal Cancer fighters site know what is up with Dave. He had the THE on Monday October 8th. Came out of the gate running, was feeling wonderful, and we thought we had hit a home run. Days 3 and 4 post op we started to see some complications, but not insurmountable. Fast forward to last Tuesday. An endoscopy was performed to see why he was having those complications, and to place a stent in to alleviate those problems. Well towards the end of this procedure he desaturated dramatically (oxygen saturarion rates) and he CODED! Yes, he went into not cardiac arrest, but respiratory arrest. They had to bag him and perform CPR, but thankfully got him back. He was put on a ventilator because of this. The next day the endoscopy was successful performed, and the stent placed. It was to be a temporary stent, removed in 6 weeks time. Well he continued to fail. Thursday night he developed a fever, and he became septic. Hopkins called at 12:20 Friday am to get consent for them to put in a central line to get more antibiotics in. 2 more phone calls ensued, one from our surgeon Dr. Yang, whom I love to pieces, who said he was taking Dave into surgery by 4AM to take down the aschemic colon they had used to fashion the new esopahagus. The stomach was not viable for him so we had used teh colon. So in essence the surgery failed. Dave has no esopahgus at all, no stomach, and will need to be feed exclusively on the J-tube til we undergo another surgery in 6 to 8 weeks time to try a final attempt.

Dave's complications are rare, but they do happen. Thank God there is a procedure called the "super charged" esophagectomy where they use micro vascular techniques to fashion the new esophagus out of either the colon or small bowel. It will be intense, and right now if Dave were awake he'd probably say no way am I gonig through another surgery. But once he recovers from this, I'm certain he'll chose to do so.

EC is a horrific disease, but there are so many great doctors out there who truly care. I need to stress that if you have been diagnosed with EC please please go to a cancer center who does this day in day out. Had Dave not been at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore or one of the other great hospitals that do this thing regularly, he would not be alive today. Community hospitals are NOT equipped to handle this.

TerryV's picture
Posts: 916
Joined: Jul 2011

I am SO Sorry to hear of Dave's complications! You are right about community hospitals not being able to handle the sort of emergencies - OR EC at all - that you have faced. EC just is too complicated to be handled by the smaller hospitals. Only a major cancer center has the experience to treat EC patients with any degree of success.

Please know that our prayers are with you. I hope that things improve for you both.

PROUD wife to Nick, age 49
lost EC battle, June 19, 2012

Posts: 665
Joined: May 2010

Absolutely mind boggling. Hang in there. Prayers for all concerned. BMGky

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